So yeah, face punching! I don’t have much to say about that because it explains itself and I’m like… 4-6 drinks in right now.
But I do notice that several of our readers have been discussing the state of monopolies in the Free Market. Let’s see if I can help clarify.
The Free Market doesn’t have a government, though it does have rules based on ownership of property. This is enforced by legisters and independent commissions who rate people’s trustworthiness, similar to a credit union. Keep breaking contracts and you’ll have a zero trust-rating, at which point you might as well commit suicide because nobody will ever hire you and you will starve. The Free Market is many things, charitable is not one of them and neither is forgiving.
In the context of a nation state, monopolies can exist with the assistance of the government. This is usually via corruption, where the government is convinced to enact laws essentially to benefit an individual or corporation, letting them maintain a death-grip on a market. However, while governments are really helpful in creating monopolies, they’re not a necessity. The Free Market has had some monopolies of its own in the past (and still sort of does).
For example: The Util. The Free Market’s unified currency came out of a civil war called “The Year of Six Coins” in which six different currencies fought for dominance, which eventually escalated to all-out conflict and people getting gunned down in the road. One corporation controls the Util (Util-A-Corp, predictably) and regulates it as they see fit. Are they a monopoly? Essentially, yes. There are competitors but they’re basically inconsequential and crushing them would cost more money than it’s worth. The Free Market may not have neither government nor police but there are plenty of mercenaries and hired guns who will do thuggery for pay and help suppress potential competition. Seizing a market by assassination is rare but not unheard of.
Just like in the real world, no monopoly is 100% unopposed. There will always be people on the edges trying to muscle in and take their share. The Free Market is full of cunning individuals who are all ready to nip at the heels of the current pack leader. With this in mind, there are monopolies in the Free Market, but they don’t last forever. The Util, in fact is the longest lasting one. Nearly 100 years and it’s still going strong.
Thanks for reading!
- Luther out